Princeton (17-8) at Cornell (2-24)
GAME NOTES: The Princeton Tigers try to extend their win streak to three in a row tonight, as they tangle with the slumping Cornell Big Red in Ivy League action at Newman Arena.
Just 5-6 in conference play so far this season, the Tigers find themselves fifth in the league standings entering play on Friday. The squad is coming off a 69-64 victory against Brown last weekend at home, the third win in the last four games for Princeton. Unfortunately, while the Tigers are an impressive 10-2 in their own building in 2013-14, in true road games they are just a game over .500 at 6-5.
Meanwhile, the Big Red would love to be just a single game above .500 in any capacity at this point. The truth of the matter is, Cornell is one of the weakest teams in all of college basketball this season, sporting a grand total of just two wins overall in 26 chances. The squad was on the road last weekend at Dartmouth and suffered an 87-78 setback, the fifth in a row overall and the 17th straight away from home for a program that is now just 1-11 against the rest of the Ancient Eight.
According to Cornell sources, the Tigers lead the all-time series, one that dates back to the 1901-02 campaign, by a massive 147-74 margin, thanks in part to a 69-48 victory at home in the first meeting of the season.
T.J. Bray led the way with 21 points, seven rebounds and six assists for the Tigers as they slipped by Brown last weekend at home. Also scoring in double figures for the hosts were Spencer Weisz and Will Barrett with 13 and 10 points, respectively, as the program put up a strong defensive front by allowing the Bears to shoot only 36.7 percent from the field and 3-of-14 behind the 3-point line.
The leading scorer for Princeton in three straight games and five of the last six, Bray has become a very strong offensive performer for the Tigers with his 17.9 ppg, shooting 53.6 percent from the field and 41.5 percent beyond the arc. Although he has appeared in only 21 of their 25 contests, Bray also leads the Tigers with 108 assists. Hans Brase and Barrett check in with another 11.0 and 10.4 ppg, respectively.
Of the 78 points tallied by Cornell in the most recent outing against Dartmouth, the only league foe the Big Red have defeated this season, Dwight Tarwater and Devin Cherry carried most of the load with 23 and 22 points, respectively. Coming off the bench was Ned Tomic with another 12 points as the team knocked down an even 50 percent from the field and 21-of-26 at the free- throw line, but at the same time was outscored by the Big Green beyond the arc, 36-15.
Scoring just 64.6 ppg on the season overall, the Big Red have watched that number drop to only 62.7 ppg in conference play, which means they are being outscored by a hefty 12.2 ppg. Nolan Cressler and his 43.1 percent accuracy behind the 3-point line, are responsible for 16.2 ppg to pace the program, while Cherry checks in with another 14.3 ppg which means the duo combines for about half the unit's production. Add in their combined 55 assists and the pair is easily the most important on the roster.
With the season winding down for both of these teams, you want to believe that there is some spark waiting to be lit in the Big Red, but with Princeton still having a chance to make it to some postseason tournament the Tigers cannot take the hosts too lightly tonight.
GAME NOTES: The Princeton Tigers try to extend their win streak to three in a
row tonight, as they tangle with the slumping Cornell Big Red in Ivy League
action at Newman Arena.Fact Stats
FACTS & STATS: Site: Newman Arena (4,473) -- Ithaca, New York.
Television: None. Home Record: Princeton 10-2, Cornell 2-9. Away Record:
Princeton 6-5, Cornell 0-15. Neutral Record: Princeton 1-1, Cornell 0-0.
Conference Record: Princeton 5-6, Cornell 1-11. Series Record: Princeton
leads, 147-74.Game Date and Time
Friday, March 7, 7 p.m. (ET)Predicted Outcome
Princeton 74, Cornell 61